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Local government organizations today face an important opportunity to revolutionize how they function and how they meet the fast-evolving needs and expectations of their customers in the digital era — the citizens, businesses, partners, leaders and stakeholders across the diverse cities and communities they serve.

The future of the local government sector is clear — digitally enabled, data-driven and community focused as never before. The transformation journey unfolding is about breaking down traditional government silos and becoming more connected — organization and community-wide — to put the customer at the very center of everything a modern local government organization does. A fully connected government organization is important in enabling and supporting the shifting role of local government leadership, ideally extending the government’s arsenal of capabilities, capacity and reach, and ultimately helping to ensure inclusion, prosperity, resilience and recovery.


Delivering a new world of personalized government services to customers.

The challenge for local government organizations is to effectively serve today’s customers and communities in new ways, ideally with a single timely view of customers to deliver what they have come to expect in terms of service and outcomes amid the modern digital experiences of other service-based organizations. Enhanced customer outcomes should be a leading priority. With digital technologies making customer-centric personalization the norm, some local authorities are picking up on this signal of changing expectations and are taking strategic action to put their own customers at the center of all they do.


Redesigning services using timely customer data, analytics, and insights.

The overarching goal should include a sustained focus on designing and implementing an operating model that is truly informed by the customer’s needs in order to provide the digital services and capabilities — the processes, systems, connections and data — that will help optimize how government functions for each of its constituents and stakeholders.


Trust is key to unlocking digital identity, security and data insights.

A key signal of change is that trust is becoming the most important factor for local government organizations to address in order to make greater use of data and technology. If citizens do not trust governments to manage personal data securely, they will withhold information, decline permission for it to be shared or go back to traditional methods, ultimately undermining the impact and advantages of digital capabilities.


Modern workplace cultures can reflect the values of today’s emerging professionals.

Some local government organizations are returning to their offices as COVID-19 recedes in their areas, often developing recovery plans that provide an opportunity to change how they work. The pandemic has been a signal of change like no other, but how organizations adopt flexible and remote working beyond the pandemic may depend on the type of area they serve.


The path to a greener future can begin with leaders at the local level.

The time has come, however, for local government organizations to expand their view and help drive significant gains in all areas that are indispensable to sustainability, including net zero of course. They should also pay attention to managing population growth impact, driving urban planning for a new era, supporting ecological diversity, and managing the impact of climate change — floods, fires, rising sea levels, natural catastrophes, and their growing threat to local government’s customers and assets. A key is to align government capabilities, resources, services and stakeholders enterprise-wide via a fully connected, end-to-end ecosystem that precisely tracks customer needs, responses, performance and outcomes.


The future of local government demands a fully connected enterprise.

The future is about breaking down silos and forging new connections among people, processes and technologies. Traditional divisions between front, middle and back offices are collapsing. Future-focused organizations are shaping new operating models in which every part of the organization, end to end, is working together seamlessly to deliver against the big picture.

The excerpt was taken from the KPMG Thought Leadership publication entitled The future of local government.